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Sideboard Guide


A guide for sideboarding against each Legacy archetype – explaining what to take out and bring in against those decks. Keep in mind that this is a rough tutorial and sometimes straying from these instructions is correct. Situations, game states and the opponent often call for a different plan of attack.

» Download a PDF sideboard guide

Recommended reading:

09-24-2017 Card Considerations: Removal by Alex McKinley on theepicstorm.com
08-14-2017 Sideboard Musings: Contextualizing Card Values by Jasper Gardener Burch on theepicstorm.com
05-25-2016 The Current State: Massacre by Bryant Cook on theepicstorm.com
02-08-2016 The Current State: Chain of Vapor by Bryant Cook on theepicstorm.com
09-04-2015 Xantid Swarm Vs. The Metagame by Bryant Cook on theepicstorm.com
06-08-2015 Post-SCG:WOR Sideboard Developments by Bryant Cook on theepicstorm.com

Terminus
Snapcaster Mage
Plague Engineer

 

Navigating the Control matchups isn't the easiest task, there's a lot to consider: From casting your draw spells before Narset, Parter of Veils hits the table to" "What are they odds our opponent has free counter-magic in hand?"

You can find the mathematical probability of free countermagic in the opponent's opening hand, on the data page. You can also find the number of Goblin Tokens you'll need to successfully beat a Stoneforge Mystic into Batterskull!

In the recent past, the plan for Control decks has been to go under them before cards such as Counterbalance could ruin your day or getting buried in card advantage by Accumulated Knowledge. While this plan is still fine, it's less important due to Force of Negation increasing the percentage of free Counterspells in our opponent's hand. In general, I've found the reliance on discard spells to become less successful over the last year. With the printing of Force of Negation, Dovin's Veto, and more recently Mystic Sanctuary (putting discarded or recently cast countermagic on top of the library) our opponent will have access to countermagic or some sort of interaction.

 

If discard is less reliable than the past, what's the plan?

I've found that punishing our opponent in other ways has been a much better strategy via Hope of Ghirapur or Defense Grid. These cards change the way the games are played by forcing the opponent to find an immediate answer or often lose the game on the following turn. What's nice about these cards is they both avoid Flusterstorm while Hope of Ghirapur also dodges Spell Pierce, Dovin's Veto, and Force of Negation. But perhaps my favorite thing about these cards is that they allow you to safely cast Echo of Eons as a "storm-engine" against these blue-based control decks.

Recently, I've been testing different configurations with Defense Grid main-deck, sometimes an additional copy in the sideboard, or more-often a pair of Hope of Ghirapur in the sideboard. There are downsides to these cards though, they aren't super effective against black-based control decks as they don't really prevent the opponent from shredding your own hand with discard via Thoughtseize or Hymn to Tourach.

 

Sideboarding Concepts

While Empty the Warrens is certainly weak to cards such as Terminus or Plague Engineer, it'll win you more games in the long-term compared to a Tendrils of Agony in your main deck. While I certainly understand the feels-bad of a Plague Engineer ruining your day, the Goblin Token plan (if naturally drawn) will do more than a Tendrils of Agony off of the top of your library.

You may think it's silly, I know that I just said Defense Grid still isn't good against the black-based Control strategies due to discard. But it's still good enough versus Snapcaster Mage, Flusterstorm, and Pyroblast that I believe it's worth it. A lot of people are hesitant on this card because it can be destroyed via Abrupt Decay or even Kolaghan's Command. It's important to keep an open mind and try out new things, concepts, and strategies. If people tested Defense Grid more often, I think they'd find that it's much better than they expected. Their worry or concern about the permanent destruction cards can be mitigated by not casting Defense Grid until the combo turn, similar to the plan we're already doing with discard — you don't have to pass the turn. A hidden benefit of Defense Grid is it's ability to shut off Leovold, Emissary of Trest from drawing 10-15 cards and then casting a Flusterstorm on your Tendrils of Agony. In most situations, your opponent won't have four open mana and they'll lose the game.

Hope of Ghirapur is a card I really like versus the Swords to Plowshares and Terminus based decks, but I've found that it's not good enough against the black-based Control strategies due to Baleful Strix, Wrenn and Six, a variety of versatile removal, Plague Engineer, and much more. Basically, let's keep it Tundra.

For siding cards out, keep in mind that you'll need a density of artifacts for Mox Opal. Because of this, I often side out Rite of Flame versus the Tundra strategies — it even becomes a Burning Wish target! But against the Underground Sea Control decks, I skim a bit on Chrome Mox due to the card disadvantage being a tough ask against the decks with discard in them.

Important Cards in the Match-up

Sideboarding

Grixis Control:

-1 Chrome Mox
+1 Defense Grid

4c Control:

-1 Chrome Mox
+1 Defense Grid

Shardless BUG:

-1 Chrome Mox
+1 Defense Grid

BUG Leovold:

-1 Chrome Mox
+1 Defense Grid

Ux Landstill:

-1 Rite of Flame
+1 Defense Grid

Stoneblade:

-1 Rite of Flame
+1 Defense Grid

Resource Links

Articles

09-25-2019 TES Matchup Battles: UW Stoneblade by Alex Poling on theepicstorm.com

08-22-2019 Through the Looking Glass: 4c Snow Control with Rugved Karhade by Anthony LaVerde on theepicstorm.com

08-13-2019 Matchup Mulligan: 4c "Snow" Control by Bryant Cook on theepicstorm.com

07-12-2019 TES Matchup Battles: 4c Control II by Alex Poling on theepicstorm.com

06-24-2019 Through the Looking Glass: Miracles II with Lawrence Harmon on theepicstorm.com

06-17-2019 Matchup Mulligan: Miracles II by Bryant Cook on theepicstorm.com

04-24-2019 Matchup Mulligan: UW Stoneblade by Bryant Cook on theepicstorm.com

01-28-2019 TES Matchup Battles: Miracles by Alex Poling on theepicstorm.com

12-24-2018 TES Matchup Battles: Landstill by Alex Poling on theepicstorm.com

11-14-2018 TES Matchup Battles: Grixis Control by Alex Poling on theepicstorm.com

11-07-2018 Combating Miracles by Bryant Cook on theepicstorm.com

10-16-2018 Through the Looking Glass: Grixis Control with Brian Braun-Duin by Anthony LaVerde on theepicstorm.com

10-10-2018 Matchup Mulligan: Grixis Control by Bryant Cook on theepicstorm.com

09-20-2018 TES Matchup Battles: Esper Stoneblade by Alex Poling on theepicstorm.com

02-19-2018 Through the Looking Glass: Miracles with Anuraag Das and Sam Roukas by AJ Kerrigan on theepicstorm.com

02-07-2018 Matchup Mulligan: 4c Pile by Bryant Cook on theepicstorm.com

01-17-2018 Matchup Mulligan: Miracles by Bryant Cook on theepicstorm.com

07-04-2017 Fighting Miracles in the Post-Top Era by AJ Kerrigan on theepicstorm.com

04-20-2017 TES Matchup Battles: 4c Control by Alex Poling on theepicstorm.com

02-02-2017 TES Matchup Battles: Leovold Sultai by Alex Poling on theepicstorm.com

08-04-2016 Fighting the Miracles Menace by AJ Kerrigan on theepicstorm.com

09-04-2015 Xantid Swarm Vs. The Metagame by Bryant Cook on theepicstorm.com

Videos

09-29-2019 Legacy Challenge - Bryant_Cook vs. WarAndMagicTV with Grixis Control on Magic: the Gathering Online

09-29-2019 Legacy Challenge - Bryant_Cook vs. _maddy with Miracles on Magic: the Gathering Online

03-24-2019 Q1 Legacy Playoff - 03/24/19 - Bryant_Cook vs. Ark4n with UW Stoneblade on Magic: the Gathering Online

03-24-2019 Q1 Legacy Playoff - 03/24/19 - Bryant_Cook vs. PhilLesh with UW Stoneblade on Magic: the Gathering Online

03-24-2019 Q1 Legacy Playoff - 03/24/19 - Bryant_Cook vs. stainerson with Miracles on Magic: the Gathering Online

02-17-2019 Legacy Challenge - Bryant_Cook vs. Stryfo with 4c Control on Magic: the Gathering Online

02-17-2019 Legacy Challenge - Bryant_Cook vs. t_gaule with Grixis Control on Magic: the Gathering Online

02-17-2019 Legacy Challenge - Bryant_Cook vs. Ozymandias17 with Grixis Control on Magic: the Gathering Online

01-20-2019 Legacy Challenge - Bryant_Cook vs. FirstToThirst with Miracles on Magic: the Gathering Online

12-02-2018 Legacy Challenge - Bryant_Cook vs. Denym with Miracles on Magic: the Gathering Online

11-04-2018 Legacy Challenge - Bryant_Cook vs. Convo with Shardless BUG on Magic: the Gathering Online

10-07-2018 Legacy Challenge - Bryant_Cook vs. AnziD104 with Miracles on Magic: the Gathering Online

10-07-2018 Legacy Challenge - Bryant_Cook vs. flowerdayonyon with Grixis Control on Magic: the Gathering Online

10-07-2018 Legacy Challenge - Bryant_Cook vs. Redviking1993 with Grixis Control on Magic: the Gathering Online

10-07-2018 Legacy Challenge - Bryant_Cook vs. Condescend with Miracles on Magic: the Gathering Online

08-08-2018 Bryant Cook vs Brian Braun-Duin with Grixis Control on Legacy Premier League

07-14-2018 Michael Connin vs. Ali Mirghahari with UW Stoneblade at Prodigy Games: Lake Worth, FL

06-24-2018 Bryant_Cook vs. atdawn_theysleep with 4c Control on Magic: the Gathering Online

06-24-2018 Bryant_Cook vs. Iwouldliketorespond with UW Control on Magic: the Gathering Online

04-29-2018 Bryant_Cook vs. flowerdayonyon with Deathblade on Magic: the Gathering Online

04-29-2018 Bryant_Cook vs. Mikeantor11 with UW Stoneblade on Magic: the Gathering Online

03-04-2018 Bryant Cook vs. Jim Davis with Miracles at StarCityGames: Worcester, MA

08-06-2017 Albert Lindblom (alli) vs atdawn_theysleep with 4c Control (Round 4) on Magic Online (MTGO)

08-06-2017 Albert Lindblom (alli) vs Momsen with 4c Control (Round 3) on Magic Online (MTGO)

05-04-2017 Romario Neto vs Anuraag Das with UWr Stoneblade on Legacy Premier League

04-17-2017 Nick Linder vs. Gabriel Meier with Miracles at Gameplace in Lucerne, Switzerland

03-18-2017 Bryant Cook vs. Joe Stempo with 4c Control at Eternal Extravaganza VI in Washington, DC

04-22-2016 Steven Fierro vs. Fred Chen with Deathblade at Fire & Dice in Woodland Hills, CA

08-22-2015 Joey Valente vs. Corey Armstrong with Shardless BUG at Fire & Dice in Woodland Hills, CA

08-11-2015 Jordon Robbins vs. Jon Ha with Miracles at Ready to Play Trading Cards in Columbia, SC

01-10-2015 Bryant Cook vs. Zane Knapp with Esper Deathblade at StarCityGames: Philadelphia, PA

08-10-2014 Bryant Cook vs. Lloyd Kurth with Shardless BUG at StarCityGames: Syracuse, NY

06-13-2014 Bryant Cook vs. Reid Duke with Miracles at StarCityGames Invitational: Columbus, OH

08-27-2013 Bryant Cook vs. Harry Corvece with Shardless BUG at StarCityGames: Baltimore, MD

06-23-2013 Matthew Bevenour vs. Brad Nelson with Esper Deathblade at StarCityGames: Philadelphia, PA

03-17-2013 Bryant Cook vs. JD Nir with Esper Stoneblade at StarCityGames: Washington, DC

05-12-2012 Bryant Cook vs. Sam Roukas with BUG Control at Jupiter Games in Binghamton, NY

02-11-2012 Bryant Cook vs. Tariq White with Stoneblade at Jupiter Games in Binghamton, NY

Daze
Force of Will
Delver of Secrets

 

In general, The EPIC Storm main-deck is set up to combat these styles of decks. You want to stay mana efficient and flexible on your game-plan, if your opponent has a fast start, maybe you should consider another option other than Ad Nauseam (possibly lean into Defense Grid paired with Echo of Eons for example). I wouldn't recommend playing your discard spells into possible Daze effects, if you can discard a copy or two of Force of Will, you can plow through their soft counter magic.

Over the last few years The EPIC Storm has added one Basic land and then a second, match-ups such as Delver of Secrets decks with Wasteland are why they're here. Search for these lands! Often these decks try to keep you off of mana using Wasteland and Stifle. How you can fight back is to search up your basics, then sit on your fetchlands, non-basic lands, and artifact mana until you need to use them to weaken the land-destruction effects.

 

What is effective in this matchup?

Empty the Warrens is incredibly good here! For lists playing more than a single copy of this card in the sideboard, you should be siding in the additional copies immediately. With Young Pyromancer seeing very little play due to Wrenn and Six, this has made Empty the Warrens more likely to ensure a victory in these match-ups. What's nice about these matchups is Flusterstorm isn't played in the same numbers as control decks, it's rare to see more than a single copy in most Delver of Secrets sideboards. If your opponent is playing black, keep Plague Engineer in the back of your mind!

 

Sideboarding Concepts

As mentioned above, if you have extra copies of Empty the Warrens bring them in, this card is naturally good against them but is also another threat to hedge against Surgical Extraction on your copies of Infernal Tutor or Burning Wish.

Defense Grid tends to be an all-star in this match-up, unlike Control decks, Delver of Secrets and other Tempo variants tend to struggle with keeping three open mana for a Force of Will and are extremely unlikely to be able to cast multiple spells through a Defense Grid. There's also the fact that out of the blue-based decks, Tempo decks tend to play the most narrow counterspells that are powerful at what they do. For example: Flusterstorm, Spell Snare, Blue Elemental Blast, Red Elemental Blast, Stifle, and many others. This is very important as Defense Grid can act as multiple copies of Duress by being able to shut these effects off long-term. Just try to keep in mind that your opponent could have Abrupt Decay, Ancient Grudge, or a few possible other cards to interact with Defense Grid. Pick your spots wisely!

The exception would be for UWx Delver variants, which tend to be uncommon, but they always seem to have hate-creatures like Ethersworn Canonist and Meddling Mage. I would likely bring in Chain of Vapor for these annoyances.

Important Cards in the Match-up

Sideboarding

Resource Links

Videos

09-29-2019 Legacy Challenge - Bryant_Cook vs. TheZooKeeper with Merfolk on Magic: the Gathering Online

09-08-2019 Q3 Legacy Playoff - 09/08/19 - Bryant_Cook vs. Samwise_GeeGee with RUG Delver on Magic: the Gathering Online

09-08-2019 Q3 Legacy Playoff - 09/08/19 - Bryant_Cook vs. fishduggery with RUG Delver on Magic: the Gathering Online

06-30-2019 Legacy Challenge - Bryant_Cook vs. Breca with Grixis Delver on Magic: the Gathering Online

06-23-2019 Q2 Legacy Playoff - 06/23/19 - Bryant_Cook vs. Guitarmy with UR Delver on Magic: the Gathering Online

06-23-2019 Q2 Legacy Playoff - 06/23/19 - Bryant_Cook vs. Mzfroste with UR Delver on Magic: the Gathering Online

06-23-2019 Q2 Legacy Playoff - 06/23/19 - Bryant_Cook vs. Condescend with UR Delver on Magic: the Gathering Online

01-20-2019 Legacy Challenge - Bryant_Cook vs. ecobaronen with UR Delver on Magic: the Gathering Online

01-20-2019 Legacy Challenge - Bryant_Cook vs. oga828 with Grixis Delver on Magic: the Gathering Online

01-20-2019 Legacy Challenge - Bryant_Cook vs. m0ller with Grixis Delver on Magic: the Gathering Online

12-02-2018 Legacy Challenge - Bryant_Cook vs. PhilLesh with Grixis Delver on Magic: the Gathering Online

12-02-2018 Legacy Challenge - Bryant_Cook vs. ReneRandrup with BUG Delver on Magic: the Gathering Online

11-04-2018 Legacy Challenge - Bryant_Cook vs. qbturtle15 with RUG Delver on Magic: the Gathering Online

11-04-2018 Legacy Challenge - Bryant_Cook vs. cspickle with Grixis Delver on Magic: the Gathering Online

11-04-2018 Legacy Challenge - Bryant_Cook vs.Leastbean with Grixis Delver on Magic: the Gathering Online

10-07-2018 Legacy Challenge - Bryant_Cook vs. poporon3n with Grixis Delver on Magic: the Gathering Online

10-07-2018 Legacy Challenge - Bryant_Cook vs. Pikula with Grixis Delver on Magic: the Gathering Online

07-14-2018 Bryant Cook vs. Nathan Robinson with RUG Delver at StarCityGames: Worcester, MA

07-08-2018 Legacy Challenge - Bryant_Cook vs. AdventuresWithTarmo with RUG Delver on Magic: the Gathering Online

06-24-2018 Bryant_Cook vs. AntzzzOnALog with Grixis Delver on Magic: the Gathering Online

06-24-2018 Bryant_Cook vs. ReneRandrup with Grixis Delver on Magic: the Gathering Online

06-24-2018 Bryant_Cook vs. AntzzzOnALog with Grixis Delver on Magic: the Gathering Online

04-29-2018 Bryant_Cook vs. Ultimar with Grixis Delver on Magic: the Gathering Online

04-29-2018 Bryant_Cook vs. yamakiller with BUG Delver on Magic: the Gathering Online

04-22-2018 Bryant_Cook vs. Kentaro_hokori with Grixis Delver on Magic: the Gathering Online

04-22-2018 Bryant_Cook vs. Lennny with BUG Delver on Magic: the Gathering Online

04-22-2018 Bryant_Cook vs. James_Zhi with Grixis Delver on Magic: the Gathering Online

04-22-2018 Bryant_Cook vs. Mzfroste with Grixis Delver on Magic: the Gathering Online

04-22-2018 Bryant_Cook vs. Eronrelentless with Grixis Delver on Magic: the Gathering Online

03-03-2018 Bryant Cook vs. Benjamin Nikolich with Grixis Delver at StarCityGames: Worcester, MA

01-27-2018 AJ Kerrigan vs. Bob Huang with Grixis Delver at StarCityGames: Philadelphia, PA

10-21-2017 Bryant Cook vs. Hans Jacob Goddick with BUG Delver at Eternal Weekend in Pittsburgh, PA

08-06-2017 Albert Lindblom (alli) vs vs r4wk5t4r with Grixis Delver (Round 2) on Magic Online (MTGO)

08-08-2015 Bryant Cook vs. Jonathon Morawski with Grixis Delver at StarCityGames: Washington, DC

08-08-2015 Bryant Cook vs. Dylan Donegan with Grixis Delver at StarCityGames: Washington, DC

06-26-2015 Nicklas Lallo vs. Hannes Eriksson with Jeskai Delver at Scandinavian Open #5

05-23-2015 Bryant Cook vs. Andrew Boswell with RUG Delver at StarCityGames: Worcester, MA

08-10-2014 Bryant Cook vs. Dan Jordan with Jeskai Delver at StarCityGames: Syracuse, NY

07-20-2014 Bryant Cook vs. Dylan Donegan with RUG Delver at StarCityGames: Baltimore, MD

04-28-2014 AJ Kerrigan vs. Eric Rill with RUG Delver at StarCityGames: Somerset, NJ

09-08-2013 Bryant Cook vs. Ben Friedman with Jeskai Delver at StarCityGames: Philadelphia, PA

07-07-2013 Bryant Cook vs. Jacob Wilson with RUG Delver at StarCityGames: Worcester, MA

03-17-2013 Bryant Cook vs. Ben Green with Jeskai Delver at StarCityGames: Washington, DC

03-17-2013 David Fleischmann Rose vs. Ben Green with Jeskai Delver at StarCityGames: Washington, DC

Thorn of Amethyst
Eidolon of the Great Revel
Thalia, Guardian of Thraben

 

These decks attack The EPIC Storm a little differently, they attempt to lower your life-total very quickly to shut off Ad Nauseam while having very little disruption otherwise. If this is the case, don't use your life-total as your resource!

The biggest piece of advice I can give for these decks is to mulligan aggressively (especially under the London Mulligan). There's little need to keep a bad or clunky seven-card hand when you can simply keep a better six or five card hand that can kill our opponent before turn three. It actually works to our advantage, but also aligns well with one of our game-plans in Echo of Eons. Which will rebuild our initial hand, it's like starting the game fresh except for the fact that you'll have a few permanents and hopefully some mana floating!

 

What is effective in this matchup?

Against these decks, I typically prefer to cast Empty the Warrens from a high life total very quickly. This should prevent you from dying to burn cards, Goblin Chainwhirler, or too many blockers allowing the opponent to stabilize. If you're unable to do this, I would lean on Echo of Eons. Unlike the blue match-ups, you don't need to protect yourself via Defense Grid here as your opponent is extremely unlikely to have any sort of meaningful interaction in hand. The risk of drawing a bad seven card hand is why I prefer to Empty the Warrens if possible, as I believe Empty the Warrens tends to be more of a sure-thing against these decks. I wouldn't risk an Ad Nauseam after turn one due to cards like Fireblast (Burn and sometimes Zoo). Of these three decks, I've found Ad Nauseam to be the best engine against Goblins as they rarely have instant speed damage or interaction in general.

Against all three, Duress is lacking — while Duress has targets in each matchup, it's not exactly what you want to be spending your resources on as the cards that matter most are all creatures. The two most common and important creatures against these decks are Eidolon of the Great Revel and Thalia, Guardian of Thraben. Both of these are very difficult to win through after they've resolved, which means that you should aim to combo before they can land or keep a hand with Thoughtseize (at least in game one).

 

Sideboarding Concepts

These decks traditionally attempt to fight back versus Combo decks by using permanent-based disruption, be ready for it! Have your copies of Chain of Vapor, Echoing Truth, and Crash ready!

Against Burn, you're really just looking to answer Eidolon of the Great Revel and Pyrostatic Pillar. I have seen things such as Mindbreak Trap and Volcanic Fallout of the sideboard of the basic Mountain deck, so keep this in mind if you're presented the option on casting a discard spell or not during the combo turn. Speaking of discard spells, due to the life-loss of Thoughtseize, we tend to shave a few copies during sideboarding against the deck looking to burn our house down.

It's not shocking, but against all three decks you should be siding out Defense Grid. Don't worry about losing an artifact for Metalcraft as it's not as relevant as a dead card in your hand for these match-ups.

For Goblins, I would easily take out Duress as it has very few targets it can actually hit in the archetype opting to play over twenty-five creatures. I would be preparing for artifacts post-board against the "little-red men" in their attempt to prove they're the better Goblin deck (Spoiler: they're not), these artifacts are likely Chalice of the Void and Thorn of Amethyst. While we are the better Goblin deck, I've actually found Empty the Warrens to be fairly unreliable against Goblins since the printing of Goblin Chainwhirler, while they don't play too many copies, there's no need to risk losing to this card. Because of this, I often sideboard out my Goblin generator.

Humans and Zoo tend to play out fairly similar for The EPIC Storm despite the decks being very different, you're simply looking to combo-off before Thalia, Guardian of Thraben, Gaddock Teeg, Ethersworn Canonist, and other disruptive friends hit the table. Keep in your mind that Humans tends to play one or two main-deck sweepers for Goblin Tokens and additional answers post-board. I put a real sense of mulliganing aggressively in these match-ups.

Important Cards in the Match-up

Sideboarding

Resource Links

Articles

10-08-2018 TES Matchup Battles: Goblins by Alex Poling on theepicstorm.com

08-06-2018 Matchup Mulligan: Burn by Bryant Cook on theepicstorm.com

08-09-2017 TES Matchup Battles: Burn by Alex Poling on theepicstorm.com

Videos

06-24-2018 Bryant_Cook vs. TMT_Noski with Burn on Magic: the Gathering Online

07-07-2013 Bryant Cook vs. Jon Ashworth with Goblins at StarCityGames: Worcester, MA

03-03-2012 Bryant Cook vs. Nick Patnode with Goblins at Jupiter Games in Binghamton, NY

03-30-2011 Liam Kane vs. Patrick Sullivan with Burn at StarCityGames: Los Angeles, CA

Thalia, Guardian of Thraben
Wasteland
Gaddock Teeg

 

These sort of decks can be divided into two categories, those with heavy hand disruption and those with permanent disruption. The more prevalent decks would be the Thalia, Guardian of Thraben based decks like Death & Taxes or Maverick with the other decks being a little more uncommon, such as Jund or Nic Fit.

 

Combo off! Is the plan.

In the permanent based matchups, it all comes down to speed, especially in game one. On the play, you want to mulligan aggressively (thank you London Mulligan) for hands that can generate a lot of mana paired with a "tutor effect" to enable a fast kill or at the very least a horde of Goblin Tokens. In these match-ups, Ponder tends to be a lot stronger on the play than when on the draw as you can afford yourself one "free" turn to go undisrupted. On the draw, it's actually fairly similar except more difficult since you're not guaranteed an undisrupted second turn. Because of this, I value Thoughtseize fairly highly on the draw if its paired with a reasonably good but slightly slower hand.

The exception here being 4c Loam as it plays Mox Diamond as well as Chalice of the Void, this means it has meaningful interaction in or on the first turn. While mulliganing aggressively on the play is still ideal, the importance of Thoughtseize and Burning Wish (Grapeshot and Pulverize come to mind) really go up on the draw.

Against the discard-based decks, consistency based cards are exactly what you would like, meaning that Ponder is an all-star where our own hand disruption is rather weak. Against other discard decks, you don't want to be drawing your own copies of discard, but would rather be advancing your own game-plan or winning the game. In Jund mirror matches in Modern, the player who sides out discard spells will more than often win against the person who kept theirs in. This is because when the game extends, the person with more "live" spells (cards that actually do things) in their deck has better draws overall and at some point those discard spells will do nothing. The same philosophy can apply to Legacy and is often true against Jund or Nicfit.

 

Sideboarding Concepts

On the draw for a majority of these match-ups, Ponder is the opposite of what you want to be doing. You should be trying to combo on turn one or have a Thoughtseize to discard Thalia, Guardian of Thraben. If there's a third game, you can consider boarding Ponders in if you're on the play as long as you aren't against a version of these decks with Chalice of the Void. Due to these all being "creature-based" decks, Defense Grid and Duress are very embarrassing to have in your hand, side these out as fast as possible.

A number of these Thalia, Guardian of Thraben decks are often running Chalice of the Void in their sideboard these days which is why I often bring in Crash. Even if our opponent doesn't have Chalice of the Void, it also hits AEther Vial, Ethersworn Canonist, Phyrexian Revoker, and even Batterskull! It's a card that seems narrow but is secretly fine. I'm hesitant to sideboard in Crash against Maverick unless I see Chalice of the Void post-board as it does have less targets than Death and Taxes or 4c Loam.

Chain of Vapor is a card I've been a big fan of the last few months. This slot was formerly occupied by additional copies of Echoing Truth, but unlike Echoing Truth it's much easier to cast in the face of Thalia, Guardian of Thraben or Thorn of Amethyst. Recently, I've found that these match-ups are all about "breaking serve" and if you can answer your opponents card quickly and efficiently it puts you very far ahead. Because if you don't? The next turn your opponent follows up their Thalia, Guardian of Thraben with a Sanctum Prelate and then a Phyrexian Revoker. Before you know it you're buried and in a tough spot, Chain of Vapor allows you to quickly answer something and then make your move without the need to pass the turn like Echoing Truth. In general, I believe Legacy has not only become faster, but it has also become even more punishing than the past.

The discard-based decks I used to not sideboard for until Collector Ouphe (which is also in Maverick), now I believe that we should be preparing for this with our copies of Chain of Vapor. It's an easy swap since Duress and Defense Grid aren't very good in this match-up anyway. If you're uncomfortable with sideboarding in the extra copy of Empty the Warrens due to Plague Engineer, you can also sideboard in Tendrils of Agony to avoid Surgical Extraction on your copies of Burning Wish. I personally prefer the additional copy of Empty the Warrens as discard decks attack our resources and Empty the Warrens is a card that allows us to combo off very few.

Important Cards in the Match-up

Sideboarding

Resource Links

Videos

09-29-2019 Legacy Challenge - Bryant_Cook vs. maelstrom197 with Death and Taxes on Magic: the Gathering Online

09-08-2019 Q3 Legacy Playoff - 09/08/19 - Bryant_Cook vs. maxbv with 4c Loam on Magic: the Gathering Online

06-30-2019 Legacy Challenge - Bryant_Cook vs. Bahra with 4c Loam on Magic: the Gathering Online

06-30-2019 Legacy Challenge - Bryant_Cook vs. Bahra with 4c Loam on Magic: the Gathering Online

06-30-2019 Legacy Challenge - Bryant_Cook vs. Olivetti with Abzan Midrange on Magic: the Gathering Online

06-23-2019 Q2 Legacy Playoff - 06/23/19 - Bryant_Cook vs. m0ller with Maverick on Magic: the Gathering Online

06-23-2019 Q2 Legacy Playoff - 06/23/19 - Bryant_Cook vs. AvocadoToast with Death and Taxes on Magic: the Gathering Online

04-06-2019 Bryant Cook vs. Benjamin Capen with Death and Taxes at the Leaving A Legacy Open III: Acton, MA

03-24-2019 Q1 Legacy Playoff - 03/24/19 - Bryant_Cook vs. luinil with Death and Taxes on Magic: the Gathering Online

03-24-2019 Q1 Legacy Playoff - 03/24/19 - Bryant_Cook vs. Koke_MTG with Death and Taxes on Magic: the Gathering Online

03-24-2019 Q1 Legacy Playoff - 03/24/19 - Bryant_Cook vs. FlyingWhales with Maverick on Magic: the Gathering Online

08-08-2018 Bryant Cook vs Bob Huang with 4c Loam on Legacy Premier League

07-08-2018 Legacy Challenge - Bryant_Cook vs. D00mwake with Death & Taxes on Magic: the Gathering Online

04-22-2018 Bryant_Cook vs. Karolmo with Death & Taxes on Magic: the Gathering Online

04-22-2018 Bryant_Cook vs. Magic-Michael with Death & Taxes on Magic: the Gathering Online

03-03-2018 Kazu Negri vs. Zachary Koch with Death & Taxes at StarCityGames: Worcester, MA

10-28-2017 Bryant Cook vs. David Kagan with Death & Taxes at StarCityGames: Washington, DC

08-06-2017 Albert Lindblom (alli) vs HeyNongMan with 4c Loam (Round 5) on Magic Online (MTGO)

05-04-2017 Romario Neto vs Michael Bonde with Death & Taxes on Legacy Premier League

05-22-2016 Jesse Onland vs. Steven Liao with 4c Loam at Face to Face Games in Toronto, CA

04-30-2016 Jordon Robbins vs. Dane Davidson with Maverick at Ready to Play Trading Cards in Columbia, SC

04-22-2016 Steven Fierro vs. Cory Haukka with Death & Taxes at Fire & Dice in Woodland Hills, CA

09-22-2014 Spencer Miller vs. Greg Pino with Bant Maverick at WUBRG.xyz

12-15-2012 Bryant Cook vs. Eli Kassis with Junk at Jupiter Games in Binghamton, NY

06-17-2012 Ari Lax vs. Devin Badaczeski with Death & Taxes at StarCityGames: Detroit, MI

06-30-2011 AJ Kerrigan vs. James Rynkiewicz with NO-Bant at StarCityGames: Edison, NJ

Natural Order
Food Chain
Aluren

 

This category doesn't really follow any rules, except every deck contains some amount of small creatures and their own disruptive element with a combo finish. I believe it's easiest to start off my comparing the two decks that are the most similar — Food Chain and Aluren. To TES, these decks are essentially the same, they both play Force of Will, Thoughtseize, and Leovold, Emissary of Trest.

 

Solving the problem

Leovold, Emissary of Trest is an issue for the obvious reasons of shutting down our cantrips and weakening the effects of discard spells. But the reason problem for us is that for each copy of Tendrils of Agony, our opponent will draw a card. So... what? If our opponents only had Force of Will, this wouldn't be a big deal. But it often leads to our opponents drawing into Mindbreak Trap or Flusterstorm to counterspell all of our copies on the stack.

How we can combat this is by using Empty the Warrens, Defense Grid, removing Leovold, Emissary of Trest from the table using Chain of Vapor and/or Echoing Truth. Grapeshot is ineffective here as our opponent will draw a card for each copy, similar to Tendrils of Agony. Empty the Warrens is fine against Leovold, Emissary of Trest, with the only downside in these matchups being that our opponent could kill us before we deal them lethal damage. In my opinion, this is another match-up where Defense Grid really gets to flex it's utility. Our opponent can draws as many cards as they'd like, but it's extremely unlikely for them to have the mana to cast their counterspell.

 

Elves

Against most combo decks, Empty the Warrens isn't an all-star — Elves is no exception. The issue is that they can both kill us through blockers with huge trample creatures. The strategy for TES is to be fast while not using Empty the Warrens unless you have to. I wouldn't get too comfort in your position at any point due to Natural Order for Archon of Valor's Reach, I've seen too many players do some math on if Craterhoof Behemoth will kill or not if they pass the turn. That's no longer acceptable due to Archon of Valor's Reach naming Sorcery locking us out of the game. If you have a window to combo off, take it.

Golgari Depths

Against most hand-disruption decks, you should be playing out your artifact mana and then trying to Ponder or Brainstorm a copy of Infernal Tutor or Burning Wish on top of your deck until you're ready to cast Ad Nauseam or Echo of Eons. These decks do play Abrupt Decay and Assassin's Trophy, but they play less artifact destruction effects than they do discard spells — play to the better odds. One recommendation that I can't emphasize enough is don't allow yourself to get blown out by Crop Rotation for Bojuka Bog messing up a pass the turn Echo of Eons or Dark Petition for Ad Nauseam. In general, I think Empty the Warrens is fine on the play but sort of bad on the draw against a Marit Lage Token or even Plague Engineer.

Sideboarding Concepts

Against Food Chain and Aluren, I believe it's a slam dunk to sideboard in the extra copy of Defense Grid as well as the Chain of Vapor to mitigate the effectiveness of Leovold, Emissary of Trest. As I mentioned above, Empty the Warrens can be a little lack-luster. We're focusing on killing on the same turn rather than just playing around the issue.

Against Elves and Golgari Depths, replacing Defense Grid and a Duress for the pair of Chain of Vapor is a no-brainer. If I had more cards to bring in against Golgari Depths, I would side out even more discard spells as I believe they're relatively in effective in discard mirrors. In the case of Elves, they're going to be bringing in some dangerous Green Sun's Zenith targets: Collector Ouphe and Gaddock Teeg. We're already bringing in Chain of Vapor, but we're also sideboarding in Grapeshot — this is both good and bad. It's good because if our Burning Wish is targeted by Surgical Extraction, we have a non-Empty the Warrens method to win the game, but the downside is we no longer can access via Burning Wish to answer these cards. That said, our probability of drawing an answer went from zero to three.

For all of these decks, I believe that you should be prepared to play around Veil of Summer. You can do this via Defense Grid against the blue decks or for the non-blue decks, using Grapeshot instead of Tendrils of Agony. In a pinch, you can always Empty the Warrens, but it's the plan I like the least. Another consideration is for Force of Vigor, this is crucial for sequencing your spells mostly. Play your artifacts in an order so that Force of Vigor matters very little, for example, Lion's Eye Diamond should always be the last artifact played since you have priority once it resolves and then can cast Infernal Tutor or Burning Wish before sacrificing it.

Important Cards in the Match-up

Sideboarding

Resource Links

Articles

01-17-2019 Matchup Mulligan: Turbo Depths by Bryant Cook on theepicstorm.com

04-23-2018 TES Matchup Battles: Elves by Alex Poling on theepicstorm.com

04-03-2018 Matchup Mulligan: Elves by Bryant Cook on theepicstorm.com

02-27-2018 TES Matchup Battles: Turbo Depths by Alex Poling on theepicstorm.com

01-15-2018 TES Matchup Battles: Aluren by Alex Poling on theepicstorm.com

10-17-2017 Through the Looking Glass: Elves with Julian Knab by Jasper Gardener Burch on theepicstorm.com

Videos

09-29-2019 Legacy Challenge - Bryant_Cook vs. Gandalf_the_Grey with Golgari Depths on Magic: the Gathering Online

09-29-2019 Legacy Challenge - Bryant_Cook vs. luinil with BUG Depths on Magic: the Gathering Online

09-08-2019 Q3 Legacy Playoff - 09/08/19 - Bryant_Cook vs. DNSolver with Golgari Depths on Magic: the Gathering Online

06-30-2019 Legacy Challenge - Bryant_Cook vs. FlyingTempest with Elves on Magic: the Gathering Online

06-30-2019 Legacy Challenge - Bryant_Cook vs. Julian23 with Elves on Magic: the Gathering Online

06-30-2019 Legacy Challenge - Bryant_Cook vs. hatjax with Elves on Magic: the Gathering Online

12-02-2018 Legacy Challenge - Bryant_Cook vs. Gul_Dukat with Turbo Depths on Magic: the Gathering Online

07-14-2018 Bryant Cook vs. Oliver Tomajko with Infect at StarCityGames: Worcester, MA

06-24-2018 Bryant_Cook vs. Cartesian with Aluren on Magic: the Gathering Online

11-28-2015 AJ Kerrigan vs. Tom Ross with Infect at StarCityGames: Somerset, NJ

10-13-2015 Jordon Robbins vs. George Boone with Infect at Ready to Play Trading Cards in Columbia, SC

08-09-2015 Bryant Cook vs. Zach Koch with Infect at StarCityGames: Washington, DC

01-10-2015 Bryant Cook vs. Rich Meyst with Elves at StarCityGames: Philadelphia, PA

10-02-2011 Jason Golembiewski vs. Chris Anderson with Elves at StarCityGames: Indianapolis, IN

07-24-2011 Liam Kane vs. Joe Lossett with Elves at StarCityGames: Seattle, WA

Chancellor of the Annex
Griselbrand
Emrakul, the Aeon's Torn

 

A series of combo decks that aim to put Griselbrand in play while disrupting the opponent, these decks tend to be fast while disrupting the opponent. I wouldn't recommend casting Empty the Warrens against these decks!

 

Our Plan

Draw discard spells and then cast them! Well, it's a bit more complicated than that. You have to decide in each game what's more important, hitting their disruption (counterspells or discard) or their own combo pieces. The decision is all based around what you have in hand, if you think you'll be able to win in a timely manner — I'd consider the disruption. If you think you're going to need more than a turn or two, I'd aim for their own combo pieces.

I mentioned not using Empty the Warrens, this is because these decks can simply go over our Goblin Tokens. Griselbrand is not only a better Batterskull against us, but will likely draw into Emrakul, the Aeon's Torn or Elesh Norn, Grand Cenobite.

 

Sideboarding Concepts

Against the Show and Tell based decks, I would be prepared for Leyline of Sanctity. This means bringing in some sort of bounce spells, if your list contains Echoing Truth I would advise for these before Chain of Vapor. If only for the off chance that they draw multiples. Another way to play around Leyline of Sanctity is to use effects like Defense Grid as they don't target, helping to render their copies of Flusterstorm and Force of Will dead when your discard spells will be useless. One of my favorite things about Defense Grid is that you can put it into play off of Show and Tell! Which in most cases will render the draw seven ability of Griselbrand fairly useless.

For the Reanimator matchups, Chain of Vapor is the preferred answer for their big creatures as these decks rarely play Leyline of Sanctity. It's rather uncommon for our opponent to have two of anything in play and it's best to be mana efficient, other than that, a spell that is easier to resolve through Chancellor of the Annex is ideal. The other white flying angel we need to be concerned with is Iona, Shield of Emeria, which is another reason to bring in bounce spells! There's also Tormod's Crypt for you to bring in, while it isn't guaranteed to win you the game, hopefully it will buy you enough time to cast Ad Nauseam. The reason we have Tormod's Crypt is it's a zero mana card for Ad Nauseam that also turns on Mox Opal (which also helps you be faster against these decks), but the biggest benefit of the zero converted mana cost is it allows you to cast it through Chancellor of the Annex.

For UB Reanimator specifically, if your sideboard contains Hope of Ghirapur I would strongly recommend bringing them in. They have a tough time answering a resolved metal "bug" and if they use a Force of Will on one, it makes Exhume awkward for them for the remainder of the game.

Important Cards in the Match-up

Sideboarding

Resource Links

Videos

06-30-2019 Legacy Challenge - Bryant_Cook vs. Iwouldliketorespond with UB Reanimator on Magic: the Gathering Online

01-20-2019 Legacy Challenge - Bryant_Cook vs. jtlox with Sneak and Show on Magic: the Gathering Online

01-20-2019 Legacy Challenge - Bryant_Cook vs. Monkey_Island with Cloudpost on Magic: the Gathering Online

12-02-2018 Legacy Challenge - Bryant_Cook vs. Suabe with Sneak and Show on Magic: the Gathering Online

11-04-2018 Legacy Challenge - Bryant_Cook vs. Aylett with Mono-Black Reanimator on Magic: the Gathering Online

07-14-2018 Bryant Cook vs. Bob Huang with Sneak & Show at StarCityGames: Worcester, MA

05-04-2017 Romario Neto vs Patrick Dickmann with Sneak & Show on Legacy Premier League

06-26-2015 Nicklas Lallo vs. Mikael Johansson with Omnitell at Scandinavian Open #5

05-23-2015 Bryant Cook vs. Max Brown with Omnitell at StarCityGames: Worcester, MA

07-20-2014 Bryant Cook vs. Todd Anderson with Sneak & Show at StarCityGames: Baltimore, MD

11-13-2013 Ari Lax vs. Allen Pennington with Tin-Fins at Grand Prix: Washington, DC

02-10-2013 Si Ning Li vs. Joshua Ravitz with Sneak & Show at StarCityGames: Edison, NJ

12-09-2012 Jacob Kory vs. Richard Centanni with Sneak & Show at StarCityGames: Las Vegas, NV

05-12-2012 Bryant Cook vs. Eli Kassis with Sneak & Show at Jupiter Games in Binghamton, NY

Thoughtseize
Lion's Eye Diamond
High Tide

 

These matches are two ships passing in the night with slight interaction. You want to keep explosive hands, usually containing Lion's Eye Diamond and "tutor effects" or at the very least a piece of hand disruption or two.

 

What is the plan?

Being fast is your primary goal. The biggest piece of advice I can give for these decks is to mulligan aggressively (especially under the London Mulligan). There's little need to keep a bad or clunky seven-card hand when you can simply keep a better six or five card hand that can kill our opponent before turn three. It actually works to our advantage, but also aligns well with one of our game-plans in Echo of Eons. Which will rebuild our initial hand, it's like starting the game fresh except for the fact that you'll have a few permanents and hopefully some mana floating!

Against most hand-disruption decks, you should be playing out your artifact mana and then trying to Ponder or Brainstorm a copy of Infernal Tutor or Burning Wish on top of your deck until you're ready to cast Ad Nauseam or Echo of Eons. Echo of Eons also has the added benefit against many of these decks by resetting their primary tool (the Graveyard), use this to your advantage! But I would still prefer Ad Nauseam if possible.

Like against most other blazing fast match-ups, you don't really want to be casting Empty the Warrens here as you're not guaranteed to live long enough to kill the opponent. Realistically, I would probably only Empty the Warrens in a dire situations.

 

Sideboarding Concepts

It's fairly easy, take out Empty the Warrens and Defense Grid for pretty much anything. Against Ad Nauseam Tendrils (ANT) I would expect Flusterstorm and Veil of Summer, the tricky part is an untapped fetchland on turn one could mean either. For lists that contain Hope of Ghirapur, I actually like sideboarding it in against ANT for this reason. Playing out your artifacts early on and then on a later turn using a "tutor effect" into a pay-off spell such as Ad Nauseam or Echo of Eons is the easiest way of playing around Flusterstorm if you're unable to discard it. Beating Veil of Summer is rather easy though, in The EPIC Storm reaching twenty storm isn't all that difficult thanks to Ad Nauseam and to a lesser extent Echo of Eons. In post-board games, I would simply look to Grapeshot the opponent, then Tendrils of Agony, and if you're sure the opponent has a Veil of Summer and can't reach enough Storm count I would Empty the Warrens. If you expect Surgical Extraction (which has become less common), then sideboard in Tendrils of Agony.

Our sideboard actually has Tormod's Crypts for the ANT match-up as well, the more tricky thing is deciding whether or not to use it and when is the correct time between Cabal Ritual and then Past in Flames. It's a tough decision, I would use context clues of the game to help inform your decision. Against Dredge and Grixis Phoenix, these should be a no-brainer to come in over cards such as Empty the Warrens or Defense Grid as you should only be concerned with discard spells and not counter-magic.

If your sideboard has them, I like bringing in copies of Echoing Truth versus Belcher and Dredge has it's a clean answer to a horde of tokens. If you expect Telemin Performance as a Burning Wish target in the Belcher sideboard, I would consider sideboarding in Hope of Ghirapur if you have them.

High Tide is a little different as we can expect to fight against copies of Force of Will and Flusterstorm. If you have Defense Grid or Hope of Ghirapur, these should come in.

Important Cards in the Match-up

Sideboarding

Resource Links

Videos

09-29-2019 Legacy Challenge - Bryant_Cook vs. MahfuzVanGogh with Dredge on Magic: the Gathering Online

09-08-2019 Q3 Legacy Playoff - 09/08/19 - Bryant_Cook vs. Fuz65 with ANT on Magic: the Gathering Online

09-08-2019 Q3 Legacy Playoff - 09/08/19 - Bryant_Cook vs. youmeandiowa with DETH on Magic: the Gathering Online

06-30-2019 Legacy Challenge - Bryant_Cook vs. CryptomancerRB with ANT on Magic: the Gathering Online

06-30-2019 Legacy Challenge - Bryant_Cook vs. Orim67 with Hogaaak Zombies on Magic: the Gathering Online

06-23-2019 Q2 Legacy Playoff - 06/23/19 - Bryant_Cook vs. THE_DADDY with Dredge on Magic: the Gathering Online

04-06-2019 Bryant Cook vs. Kenton Najdzien with Grixis Phoenix at the Leaving A Legacy Open III: Acton, MA

02-17-2019 Legacy Challenge - Bryant_Cook vs. Guitarmy with ANT on Magic: the Gathering Online

02-17-2019 Legacy Challenge - Bryant_Cook vs. SpatulaOfTheAges with Enchantress on Magic: the Gathering Online

11-04-2018 Legacy Challenge - Bryant_Cook vs. albertoSD with Dredge on Magic: the Gathering Online

10-07-2018 Legacy Challenge - Bryant_Cook vs. LindenPaine with ANT on Magic: the Gathering Online

07-14-2018 Michael Connin vs. Anthony Garcia with High Tide at Prodigy Games: Lake Worth, FL

07-08-2018 Legacy Challenge - Bryant_Cook vs. DNSolver with Reanimator Depths on Magic: the Gathering Online

07-08-2018 Legacy Challenge - Bryant_Cook vs. mh99 with TES on Magic: the Gathering Online

07-08-2018 Legacy Challenge - Bryant_Cook vs. ExpectNoMercy with Dredge on Magic: the Gathering Online

04-29-2018 Bryant_Cook vs. muecke with ANT on Magic: the Gathering Online

02-27-2018 TES Matchup Battles: Turbo Depths by Alex Poling on theepicstorm.com

10-16-2013 Jeremy Stowe vs. Andrew Dziedz with Dredge at StarCityGames: Milwaukee, MN

07-07-2013 Bryant Cook vs. Royce Walter with TES at StarCityGames: Worcester, MA

11-05-2011 Liam Kane vs. Caleb Neufeld with Dredge at StarCityGames: Las Vegas, NV

Chalice of the Void
Karn, The Great Creator
Wasteland

 

Against all of these decks, you want to be fast and protect your lands. While hopefully dodging Chalice of the Void and Karn, The Great Creator!

 

Playing Around Hate

The first step is search for your basic lands. This is especially crucial for playing around Wasteland, if your opponent is also packing Ghost Quarter, maybe you should consider leaving one in your deck. One way to do this is to sit on your fetchlands as long as you can.

For beating Eldrazi Stompy or other Chalice of the Void aggro decks, you're really looking to win quickly. Once again, lean into the London Mulligan. You have Echo of Eons as a resource to come back into the game if need be. If you're not winning quickly you're going to want to be leaning on discard spells for Chalice of the Void, Thought-Knot Seer, and Karn, The Great Creator. Karn, The Great Creator tends to be an issue because it's a one-sided Null Rod that shuts off all of our artifact mana: Mox Opal, Chrome Mox, Lotus Petal, and Lion's Eye Diamond. Karn, The Great Creator will then lock you out of the game completely by retrieving a Mycosynth Lattice which in conjunction with Karn, The Great Creator will stop all of your cards from working properly. Another downside of Karn, The Great Creator is sometimes he can find an answer to a horde of Goblin Tokens with the sideboard Ratchet Bomb, that said, I still think Empty the Warrens is a very strong plan against the Eldrazi decks.

Burning Wish is rather weak outside of Echo of Eons against Lands as a combo enabler. Mostly because Empty the Warrens is easily answered by The Tabernacle at Pendrell Vale and Dark Petition is risky due to Crop Rotation into Bojuka Bog. That said, it certainly becomes a stronger tool in post-board games due to Pulverize. Against all of these decks, I tend to value Burning Wish fairly highly in my opening hand due to the ability to answer Chalice of the Void or even a possible Thorn of Amethyst. A cool thing about Pulverize is it can stop your opponent from playing Mycosynth Lattice, since in then you'll be able to blow up all permanents including their Karn, The Great Creator! A tip for you regarding Pulverize in these match-ups is to conceal or hide your Mountains until you're ready to cast Pulverize. This can be done by sitting on fetchlands like Bloodstained Mire or holding the Badlands or Volcanic Island in your hand.

For the Bomberman match-up, I tend to like to keep hands with a lot of zero casting cost artifacts. This is because their deck also plays quite a few zero converted mana cost spells, which prohibits them from playing Chalice of the Void for zero.

 

Sideboarding Concepts

Sideboarding tends to be fairly straight forward, we don't have time on the first turn to be casting Ponder before we're locked out of the game. You really want to be casting a discard spell or winning on the first turn, which is why we're bringing in the sideboard copy of Duress. Defense Grid tends to be quite poor here as well, so feel free to take that out of the deck. From here we bring in our suite of answers: Chain of Vapor, Crash, and if your list plays it Echoing Truth.

Similar to Pulverize, I like hiding my Mountains until I need to cast Crash if possible to avoid Wasteland or Ghost Quarter. A cool thing about Crash is like Pulverize, you can use to to destroy Karn, The Great Creator if your opponent tries to put Mycosynth Lattice into play! Except now, they don't have the information of you having the answer to their combo.

Chain of Vapor is the best bounce spell for answering Karn, The Great Creator and Sphere of Resistance but tends to be weaker to Chalice of the Void. If possible, I would try to sequence Crash to destroy any copies of Chalice of the Void and then leave Chain of Vapor for whatever is left. Did I mention it can even bounce Marit Lage Token in a pinch?!

Important Cards in the Match-up

Sideboarding

Eldrazi/Chalice Aggro:

-4 Ponder
-1 Defense Grid
+2 Chain of Vapor
+2 Crash
+1 Duress

Bomberman:

-4 Ponder
-1 Defense Grid
+2 Chain of Vapor
+2 Crash
+1 Duress

Resource Links

Articles

05-21-2019 TES Matchup Battles: Eldrazi Ramp by Alex Poling on theepicstorm.com

03-22-2018 Through the Looking Glass: Lands with Jarvis by AJ Kerrigan on theepicstorm.com

03-19-2018 TES Matchup Battles: Eldrazi by Alex Poling on theepicstorm.com

03-16-2018 Matchup Mulligan: Eldrazi by Bryant Cook on theepicstorm.com

12-13-2017 Matchup Mulligan: Lands by Bryant Cook on theepicstorm.com

09-27-2017 TES Matchup Battles: Lands by Alex Poling on theepicstorm.com

03-07-2016 Storming Through the Rise of the Eldrazi by AJ Kerrigan on theepicstorm.com

Videos

09-29-2019 Legacy Challenge - Bryant_Cook vs. Pathy with Eldrazi Ramp on Magic: the Gathering Online

09-08-2019 Q3 Legacy Playoff - 09/08/19 - Bryant_Cook vs. twin_mtg with Bomberman on Magic: the Gathering Online

09-08-2019 Q3 Legacy Playoff - 09/08/19 - Bryant_Cook vs. Hulahula with Eldrazi Ramp on Magic: the Gathering Online

03-24-2019 Q1 Legacy Playoff - 03/24/19 - Bryant_Cook vs. franticpats with Lands on Magic: the Gathering Online

03-24-2019 Q1 Legacy Playoff - 03/24/19 - Bryant_Cook vs. Pathy with Eldrazi Ramp on Magic: the Gathering Online

02-17-2019 Legacy Challenge - Bryant_Cook vs. Aylett with Eldrazi on Magic: the Gathering Online

02-17-2019 Legacy Challenge - Bryant_Cook vs. Lagerbon with Chalice & Taxes on Magic: the Gathering Online

01-20-2019 Legacy Challenge - Bryant_Cook vs. CrazyCranium with Lands on Magic: the Gathering Online

12-02-2018 Legacy Challenge - Bryant_Cook vs. Iziter with Eldrazi Ramp on Magic: the Gathering Online

11-04-2018 Legacy Challenge - Bryant_Cook vs. Nocley with Eldrazi Ramp on Magic: the Gathering Online

08-08-2018 Bryant Cook vs Jarvis Yu with Lands on Legacy Premier League

06-24-2018 Bryant_Cook vs. hardtimes4Nik with Eldrazi Aggro on Magic: the Gathering Online

04-29-2018 Bryant_Cook vs. Call1Me1Dragon with Lands on Magic: the Gathering Online

04-30-2016 Jordon Robbins vs. Eric Yu with Lands at Ready to Play Trading Cards in Columbia, SC

Blood Moon
Fiery Confluence
Trinisphere

 

This matchup is very similar to the Prison decks above, I recommend reading that as well. The difference between those decks and these, is that this category of decks goes after our mana harder. Between Blood Moon, Magus of the Moon, Chalice of the Void, Sphere of Resistance, Thorn of Amethyst, Trinisphere, and Karn, The Great Creator it's a lot to take on!

 

What is effective in this matchup?

More important than ever, it's important to search for your basics! Fortunately here, you don't need to worry about Wasteland. What's nice about these decks (as well as Lands above) is that Chrome Mox and Mox Opal act as a basic land that is very difficult for our opponent to interact with.

I can't emphasize how strong Burning Wish into Pulverize is for these match-ups. Unlike the Prison decks, these Blood Moon style decks very often give you the Mountains that are required for Pulverize's alternate casting cost making it a slam dunk. Because of this, I really value Burning Wish quite highly on any hand when on the draw.

Something you should keep in mind is that while I do like Empty the Warrens against these decks as it allows you to combo quickly, they do play between three and four copies of Fiery Confluence. Meaning, if you can play a discard spell post-Goblin Tokens, look to hit this. Some lists even play a Ratchet Bomb to get with Karn, The Great Creator...

 

Sideboarding Concepts

Sideboarding tends to be the same as the Prison decks, we don't have time on the first turn to be casting Ponder before we're locked out of the game. You really want to be casting a discard spell or winning on the first turn, which is why we're bringing in the sideboard copy of Duress. Defense Grid tends to be quite poor here as well, so feel free to take that out of the deck. From here we bring in our suite of answers: Chain of Vapor, Crash, and if your list plays it Echoing Truth.

Crash is particularly good against these decks as they give you plenty of Mountains via Blood Moon and Magus of the Moon!

Chain of Vapor is the best bounce spell for answering Karn, The Great Creator and Sphere of Resistance but tends to be weaker to Chalice of the Void. If possible, I would try to sequence Crash to destroy any copies of Chalice of the Void and then leave Chain of Vapor for whatever is left.

Important Cards in the Match-up

Sideboarding

Dragon Stompy:

-4 Ponder
-1 Defense Grid
+2 Chain of Vapor
+2 Crash
+1 Duress

Mono-Red Sneak Attack:

-4 Ponder
-1 Defense Grid
+2 Chain of Vapor
+2 Crash
+1 Duress

Resource Links